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Yard of Flannel Recipe

(Excerpted from Proprietress Holly Arnold Kinney’s “Shinin’ Times at The Fort”) 

While this holiday libation may be an acquired taste, once you acquire it you will be in love. It marries the hoppy taste of beer with the warmth of rum-based eggnog and, as Holly’s mother used to say, it will “warm the cockles of your heart” on a snowy evening. When Sam’l researched the cocktail, here is what he discovered: “A fine colonial winter specialty in taverns, this hot ale drink takes its name from its lovely soft texture. The Yard of Flannel is a wonderful holiday drink that used to be a favorite among coachmen, outriders and waggoneers. Coming out of the tavern, bartenders would hand up a yard-long glass of this to freezing coach drivers perched high above.” The recipe sounds far more complicated than it is and is worth the effort in the resulting warmth of body and soul. Try it at home this holiday season!   

Serves 4  


  • 1 qt. good ale 

  • 4 large eggs 

  • 4 tbsp. sugar 

  • 1 tsp. powdered ginger 

  • 4 oz. Jamaica dark rum 

  • Grated nutmeg, for sprinkling 


  1. Heat the ale in a saucepan.  

  1. In a blender, beat the eggs with the sugar.  

  1. Add the ginger and then the rum and blend well.  

  1. When the ale is almost boiling, slowly combine the two mixtures, alternately pouring the hot ale, a little at a time, into the egg mixture and blending well, to prevent curdling. Pour back and forth between the saucepan and the blender until the drink is silky or as soft as flannel.  

  1. Serve in a large glass sprinkled with nutmeg.